PHOENIX (AP) — An Arizona man convicted of killing a college student in 1978 is scheduled to become the first person to be executed in the state after a nearly eight-year hiatus in its use of the death penalty.

Clarence Dixon, 66, is scheduled to die by lethal injection Wednesday morning at the state prison in Florence for his murder conviction in the killing of 21-year-old Arizona State University student Deana Bowdoin. If the execution goes ahead as planned, he will be the sixth inmate to be put to death in the United States this year. 

In recent weeks, Dixon’s lawyers have made arguments to the courts to postpone his execution, but judges had so far rejected his argument that he is mentally unfit to be executed and had no rational understanding of why the state wanted to put him to death.

Dixon declined the option of being executed by the gas chamber — a method that hasn’t been used in the United States in more than two decades — after Arizona refurbished its gas chamber in late 2020. Instead, the state plans to executed him with an injection of pentobarbital. 

The state’s hiatus in executions was driven by an execution that critics say …read more



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